Some people used to apply passwords to important files to protect them from being opened by others. If the file is leaked, it should be unreadable because the others don't have its password. It is a typical security method.
Many tools let the file creator produce a password for the file and only access it with the correct password. Many files, such as PDF, Zip, Word, Excel, Access, and other types, offer this security feature.
After you lock anything, you have to keep the key in hand; when you encode a file, you must memorize the decode pass. If you somehow lose a file's password, your file is at risk because you possibly will lose the file accordingly.
Getting lost passwords from files is a particular question in data security. We don't want anyone with any tools to open an encoded file without a password. However, some password kits can figure out the original password from the encoded file. Namely, many encoded files are accessible even if you forget their passwords.
You indeed start to worry about your encoded files. If others copy them out, they will open the files eventually. Yes, your concerns are correct. Whether your files are encoded or encrypted, keeping them not copied out is essential to prevent leakage.
Here, let's see you, the file owner, how to recover a lost password.
When we consider how to get the password back, the file is still entirely on the computer. You can search the Internet to download a proper password tool kit. A password kit usually only works for particular file types, such as PDF or Excel, and limited versions. You should find a tool (software or app) that covers your file format. For example, Word 2019; then, download it. The rest jobs are straight. Follow the kit's instructions; you can get the forgotten password and open the file as before.
2 Password kits
At different Devices/OS, you need other kits to recover passwords. Besides, it would help if you also considered the device or file types when choosing password kits. For example, even in Windows/PC, for PDF, Zip, Word, Excel, Access, PPT, Email, you possibly have to take different tools to deal with them.
Below are some password kits for Windows.
AxCrypt Encrypt Premium
Cryptainer Data Encryption
iSunshare Windows Password Genius
Advanced Office Password Recovery
Advanced PDF Password Recovery
When you get these resources, you should understand everyone can get them too. In other words, if these files are leaked to others. Even if they don't have passwords, they can probably open these files with password tool kits. Especially for files created by early specifications, it's easy to download free kits to reverse the password and then open them.
So, we don't recommend setting a password for individual files. One reason is the owners forget passwords from time to time and are compelled to give up the data. On the other hand, as long as data thieves get these files, they have many options to dig out the contents.
In general, the file password is just a temporary method to lock files. Because the encryption algorithm heavily relies on computing capability, it's safe only if your computers are powerful enough and with a new operating system. Meanwhile, your software must be upgraded to the latest versions and updated with all patches.
We give you two rules here regarding file passwords.
- If your computer and software aren't updated to the mainstream level, don't trust the file password, even if it's a fleeting usage.
- If the file is used to record data for future reference, don't use a password to lock it because it should be relatively easy to decode today's encryption after 2 or 3 years.
In general, you should be cautious about using the file password. If you applied it before but forgot it somehow, we hope the resources here can help you recover your password and get your data back.